Can you ski while pregnant? That’s up to you. We’d just say that at all times during your pregnancy — from the first to the third trimester — it’s a good idea to take potentially high-impact sports seriously. If you fall, there’s always the risk that you or your little one could get hurt.
Here, we’re sharing what you should bear in mind before hitting the powder while pregnant.
In this article 📝
- Is it safe to ski while pregnant?
- Can you ski in the second trimester?
- Can you snowboard while pregnant?
- Can you go water skiing while pregnant?
- What activities should you avoid when pregnant?
Is it safe to ski while pregnant?
When it comes to skiing while pregnant, there’s no single strict rule that every mama-to-be should follow. Skiing itself is pretty safe but, when accidents happen, they can be really serious.
There are three main concerns when skiing:
Falls during pregnancy increase the chances of pregnancy loss. As women tend to experience “reduced postural control” when pregnant (i.e. we get a little clumsy because our center of balance is off), as many as 27% of mamas-to-be report falling. Strapping skis to your feet doesn’t usually make it easier to stay upright.
Collisions: When you’re skiing downhill, you get up some speed. Hitting standing objects (or other skiers) carries similar risks to falling.
Altitude: This one is less of a concern because you’re rarely going to be above 2,500 meters on a skiing holiday. But you might want to avoid extreme heights while pregnant as they put you at risk of altitude sickness, which can have a knock-on effect on your baby.
Not all skiers have the same risk of falling. If you’re a gold-medal slalomist or have lived in the mountains all your life, you may be just as comfortable on skis as on your own two feet.
But if you’ve never skied before, let’s be real: you’re going to fall over many, many times as you practice, so it might be best to book your winter holiday for after you give birth.
Can you ski in the second trimester?
Throughout your pregnancy, from the first to the third trimester, skiing carries risks.
Skiing while pregnant in the first trimester — that’s your first 12 weeks — is probably safest.
Meanwhile, in your third trimester, strenuous exercise is not generally recommended at all. Your baby is bigger, so they’re outgrowing some of the protection your body gave them earlier on when your uterus still fit inside your pelvis. If you do have a fall, it’s more likely to lead to complications.
Can you snowboard while pregnant?
The same advice applies to snowboarding while pregnant. While the decision is ultimately up to you, it’s really important to be aware of the risks.
By the way, one study by the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) found that snowboarders were at least 50% more likely to get injured than skiers. So, if you’re weighing up the options, skiing might be best. Again, though, it might be safest to save the slopes for next year.
Can you go water skiing while pregnant?
Water skiing is another of those sports with a high risk of falling. Just as with skiing and snowboarding, water skiing while pregnant isn’t really recommended.
What activities should you avoid when pregnant?
So skiing and snowboarding are sports to think twice about when pregnant. But certain activities are best avoided completely for the moment. These include:
- **Exercises that involve lying on your back for extended periods, particularly after 16 weeks of pregnancy. The pressure of your not-so-little peanut can compress an important artery, which can make you feel faint and sick.
- Contact sports. Rugby’s a no-no, as well as martial arts like judo, wrestling, or boxing.
- Deep-sea diving. That’s because your little one can’t protect themselves against pressure changes as you go underwater.
But if you want some good news and some green lights, check out our complete guide to pregnancy workouts.
Mama, you’re doing great!